I think mankind is more than waist-deep in daily routine. Countless inherited acts, accumulated pell-mell and repeated time after time to this very day, become habits that help us live, imprison us, and make decisions for us throughout our lives. These acts are incentives, pulsions, patterns, ways of acting and reacting that sometimes – more frequently than we might suspect – go back to the beginnings of mankind’s history. Ancient, yet still alive, this multicenturied past flows into the present like the Amazon River pouring into the Atlantic Ocean the vast flood of its cloudy waters.
– Fernand Braudel, Afterthoughts on Material Civilization and Capitalism